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Author Topic: Walmart BFL Lake St Clair 7/28  (Read 2074 times)

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Walmart BFL Lake St Clair 7/28
« on: August 05, 2012, 07:48:10 PM »

Well, I have actually written this 1 1/2 times and somehow it got cleared and I didn't save it!!! Anyway, I got all I needed to get organized at work on Monday and called the Coach and asked if he wanted to leave that afternoon. I wasn't sure earlier that day I was going to leave and it didn't take him long to be ready and be over to my house. We didn't leave until 6:30 pm, but the Coach hates early mornings so sleeping in a bit Tuesday morning sounded better than a 3am departure time.

We had some "neighbor" problems at 3am that night that involved the police being called by the motel, but still made it on the water at 8:30am. It was going to be a windy day with winds out of the north at 20+ mph. This would limit movement and we decided to start where we left off a week and a half ago.

The area still had fish but it was definitely slower than it had been. We checked several areas and did put a few nice fish in the boat and then tried to expand a couple miles south and a couple miles east. South gave us a few nice ones, but the move east showed very good potential.

Every time we had to move this day it proved to be a "drenching" experience as the wind just didn't want to let up. The fish were biting, though, and at 8 pm that afternoon we had finally had enough. We caught most of our fish drop shotting a poor boys erie darter in smoke, which has been hot this year. We also caught a few on a series 5xd crankbait and a tube in smokin' purple flash. All our fish came from 14-15 for around weedbeds. We ended the day with 42 keepers and each weighed our best 5, mine weighed in at 22-15 and the Coach's weighed in at 23-6! The best fish of the day was a 5-1.

We decided to head up into Marine City Wednesday and hit the St Clair River as we had been hearing reports that the fish had moved into the river. It was another windy day as winds were out of the south at 20+ mph again. South winds make the river tough to fish as it backs the current up on top, but still has plenty of current below you which makes your bait want to run under the boat.

The river proved to be slow and steady. Finding fish was easy the first pass through areas, but a second pass and we couldn't get another bite. It seemed every time we moved we would pick up a few, but always failed to expand the spots. It was a decent day, though, and we once again boated 42 more keepers.

We caught all our fish in 20-30 fow on everything from tubes to drop shotted anything. We experimented a lot, but most of the fish once again came on the smoke darter. Each of our best 5 this day weighed in at over 20 pounds, but were much harder earned as the average fish in the river was around 3 pounds. Our best 2 for the day came as a double and were 4-12 and 4-10.

Thursday dawned to flashes and rumbles as strong thunderstorms moved through the area. Jonesy, his brother Jason, the Coach, and I decided to head over to Bass Pro Shops in Auburn Hills to wait out the storms. We finally got on the water at 1:00. We decided to have a candy bar tourney with Jason and Brad. You had to weigh and write down your best 5.

The Coach and I decided to hit new stuff mostly and check on some stuff we had not hit yet on the way so we didn't know what to expect. We hit the channels of the St Clair River for a few hours in 20-30 fow and then hit some shallow main lake stuff ending up along the shipping channel out on the main lake.

We caught fish everywhere we stopped and fished a wide variety of bait from spinnerbaits to tubes to wacky rigs and caught fish on nearly everything. We ended the day with 37 keepers and our best 5 combined went 19-4 (which won the candy bar:) Our best fish of the day was a 4-6. I failed to take any pics on this day.

Friday dawned dead calm and bluebird skies. I always hit my key stuff quickly on Friday in an order I plan on fishing on tourney day. I only hit the good stuff for a few minutes to see if I can get bit. It was not a good morning We were able to put a few fish in the boat, but both the numbers and size had disappeared. I didn't know if it was because of the weather or if the fish had evacuated.

We went to our secondary stuff and did catch a few decent fish, but after several moves you could tell the bite was tough. I went into scramble mode and made a long run into Canada to hit some weedbeds that I have fish for years. We caught several decent fish off these weedbeds, but still had not found that 20 pound sack that I always look for.

We made a trip to a rock pile that is in 19 for that produced a 2 1/2 pounder on nearly every cast for over an hour. It was fun, but definitely not a 20 pound spot. At 12:30 yet another strong thunderstorm was heading across the lake. It was still calm so we decided we better head towards the ramp and my previously hot area was on the way. We stopped at 1:00 to check it once more and in 3 casts I caught a 4-9, 3-15, and a 4-1. I put all my stuff up and headed in to beat out the storms.

I realized that we had hit this spot just at the right time before the storm hit, but it did prove they were still there. I decided I was gonna go for broke and hammer this area all day hoping to run into the bite.

Tourney day dawned once again with 20 mph winds out of the NE. Fortunately we didn't have a long run. The fish quickly showed us that it was once again gonna be a tough morning. I drew Phil, who is the guy I sign up for these events with and have known him for a long time. It was going to be a good day regardless of the bite. Phil is a great fisherman and a real good guy who has been doing this for a long time.

The first pass through the area produced a 3 pounder for Phil, but nada for me. I was doing a lot of cranking and Phil was sticking to the drop shot. A second pass and Phil put 2 fish over 4 pounds in the 'well and another 3 pound fish. I was finally able to put a 3 pounder in the 'well on the drop shot darter. We fished a couple hours and had a few more bites, but put nothing in the boat.

At 11am I still only had one fish and I was feeling very anxious and was having trouble concentrating on what I was doing. The bite was terrible and I really needed some bites. I had a small rock pile that was not far away that was loaded with fish on Thursday, although the size was not there. I decided to go try to get a quick limit and then get back to work in the big fish area.

Upon arriving I ran into Jonesy who was also struggling. He had 3 fish and had just arrived there as well. Phil quickly put his 5th fish in the boat and I was able to start putting a few in the 'well as well. It took me about 25 minutes, but I finally put my limit in the 'well and was able to get back to the starting area with a little more peace of mind, but with only about 10 pounds in the 'well. The bite was about the same as where we left it, tough!

I knew the fish were here to win and was hoping we would hit a window where it would happen. Finally, at 2 pm 1 1/2 hours before we weighed in they decided to feed. It was a little too late though. I stayed with my crank bait and Phil was still drop shotting. I was able to put a couple more 3 pounders in the well, but still had one of the smaller fish from to rock pile at weigh in. Phil was able to upgrade a few more ounces. I had several fish smash the crank bait without hooking up, so I don't really know what kind of quality I was missing.

I ended the tourney with a 15-10 limit and finished 27th which was 1-7 out of the money. Phil had 18-1 which was good enough for 4th place and made my 3rd conger in 3 tourneys to cash a check so at least I was a good guide . There was also another boat in our area that day and the boater pulled off a 2nd place finish with over 21 pounds. He figured out how to catch em and it proved my fish were still there I just didn't figure it out.

We are heading over to the Grand River for the 4th event of the season on August 18th. The day after that I will be heading straight to the Detroit River for the FLW Open which will be my first professional event. My Dad and the Coach helped me out a lotttt with the $4000 day entry fee so I hope I can make them proud. The Coach is not allowed to pre fish this event with me as he is my father-in-law and the rules state that is has to be another competitor, father, mother, brother, sister, son, daughter, or spouse.

I called to clarify and I was told he was not allowed. My Dad will be driving up from Arkansas to pre fish with me. It should be a great time. God Bless Everyone!
« Last Edit: October 23, 2012, 02:04:57 AM by djkimmel »

Team houston

Re: Walmart BFL Lake St Clair 7/28
« Reply #1 on: August 07, 2012, 08:08:14 AM »

Another great write up. It was so great to get paired up with you again after all these years. I noticed you left out the details of the real tourny that day. The Rockbass Rumble,of which you took a whippin. That steak and lobster dinner never tasted so good. Honestly, thanks again for another great day on the water.


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Re: Walmart BFL Lake St Clair 7/28
« Reply #2 on: October 23, 2012, 02:06:41 AM »

Banner day for you Team houston. You caught more weight than the great and powerful rufus AND you won the Rockbass Rumble! Wow! ;D

Sounds like you both had a pretty good tournament day even if it wasn't completely stellar.

Help stop invasive spcies. Don't move fish between unconnected bodies of water. Clean, drain and dry your boat before launching on another water body.
Unless clearly stated as such, opinions expressed by Dan Kimmel on this forum are not the opinions or policies of The Bass Federation of Michigan.
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